Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Inflating Annie

A quickie for today:

I recall quite distinctly my very first introduction to CPR.  It was at Williamsburg Middle School, in... 7th or 9th grade, perhaps.  I had Mr. Sullivan, the football coach, for my PE/Health teacher.  During the health sessions of that year we would retreat to a tiny trailer out behind the gym where we spent the better portion of class doing busy work or getting a jump start on our homework.

It was a rare occasion we had a day with any real educational meat on it, our CPR days being among them.  I remember feeling excited and nervous at the thought of having to learn and demonstrate skills that would result in my very first certification card.  I felt too young and unprepared for such a responsibility but also eager to prove I was worthy of that tiny piece of paper.

CPR fairly quickly lost its luster in the sense that I got it.  I understood, I paid attention, I made sure I knew the material and skills.  In other words, I actually cared.  There were plenty of people in my class who did not care as much as I did and spent their time doing as little as possible to get through.  These individuals were the ones who would drag their feet when coming to the front of the class to perform skills on the horribly creepy flesh Annie torso, almost immediately claiming their dummy was broken.  It wasn't their fault the chest wasn't rising, it was a malfunctioning set of lungs.  Inevitably at this point Mr. Sullivan would look at me, interupt whatever menial task I was trying to stay entertained with, and make me come to the front of the class to disprove these claims by testing the Annies.

Nothing says accomplishment quite like establishing yourself as the best mouth-to-mouth-er in middle school health class...